Free HbA1c at your local CVS clinic through 6/12

Free A1c Tests Available at MinuteClinic to Help

Diabetes Patients Monitor Blood Sugar Levels

Woonsocket, R.I., May 10, 2010 – Patients with diabetes seeking convenient A1c monitoring can receive a complimentary test at walk-in MinuteClinic medical centers inside select CVS/pharmacy stores. The free A1c test, sponsored by Bayer Diabetes Care, is available through June 12, or while supplies last. No appointment is necessary and MinuteClinic is open seven days a week, including evenings and weekends.

In addition to daily self-testing of glucose levels, diabetics should receive regular A1c tests that measure their average blood glucose levels over a two to three- month period. The American Diabetes Association advises that patients keep their A1c level below seven percent.

“The hemoglobin A1c test is the best measure available to help the more than 24 million Americans with diabetes monitor their condition and prevent other health-related issues from arising,” said Andrew Sussman, M.D., President, MinuteClinic and Senior Vice President/Associate Chief Medical Officer, CVS Caremark. “With hundreds of walk-in medical centers in stores located near where patients live and work, MinuteClinic is a tremendous resource for diabetics to receive lab testing and speak with a nurse practitioner about their health status.”

As part of the complimentary A1c test, MinuteClinic practitioners will check a patient’s vital signs, review medical history and administer the blood test. Results are available within five minutes and are discussed with the patient. A visit summary that includes the A1c test results is made available to primary care providers with patient permission. Visit summaries are typically sent within 24 hours via electronic medical record, fax or mail.

For a list of MinuteClinic locations where the complimentary A1c test is available, visit A1c tests are not offered at MinuteClinic locations in Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada and Pennsylvania.

MinuteClinic also offers comprehensive health condition monitoring services for individuals diagnosed with high cholesterol, high blood pressure and asthma.

In addition to monitoring services, MinuteClinic practitioners are trained to diagnose, treat and write prescriptions for common family illnesses such as strep throat and ear, eye, sinus, bladder and bronchial infections. Minor wounds, abrasions and joint sprains are treated, and common vaccinations such as influenza, tetanus, pneumovax, and Hepatitis A & B are available at most locations. Wellness and prevention services include camp, sports and college physicals as well as health care screenings. Most health care insurance is accepted for MinuteClinic services.

I took advantage of the last round of free HbA1c tests given at Walgreens. In this case, it appears that rather than single dates at individual pharmacies, these free HbA1c tests are available at any date/time at the MinuteClinics.

This is a great way to get screened for diabetes. Please pass it on to anyone around you that might be helped by early diabetes screening.